Mar 19, 2013
Every week, librarian Judy Woodward compiles the most interesting reference questions and sends them to the Roseville Review. Here's this week's stormy inquiry!
Q. Recently, they’ve started naming winter storms. Or at least I think that’s what they’re doing. In March we had a storm called Ukko. What kind of name is that?
A. Actually, Ukko is a pretty good name for a storm. In Finnish mythology, Ukko is the god of sky and thunder. Not that you’re likely to run into any flesh-and-blood Ukkos any time soon. According to government statistics, only about two babies in a million are given that moniker.
Incidentally, it’s not the National Weather Service that has started giving names to winter storms, but the Weather Channel. Last fall, the 31-year-old cable station announced an alphabet’s worth of unusual names for winter storms this season. In addition to Ukko, the Weather Channel has Virgil, Waldo, Xerxes and Yogi waiting in the wings in case winter goes on beyond the official opening date of Spring . (Internet Resources.)